Our Team

by Prasad Krishna last modified Jun 16, 2017 01:59 PM
We undertake policy-focused, applied, and academic research on topics at the intersection of internet and society, and driven by concerns of digital rights and public interest. Our teams are based in Bangalore and Delhi.


Sunil Abraham

Sunil Abraham

Sunil is the Executive Director of CIS. He is also a social entrepreneur and Free Software advocate. He founded Mahiti in 1998 which aims to reduce the cost and complexity of Information and Communication Technology for the Voluntary Sector by using Free Software. Today, Mahiti employs more than 50 engineers and Sunil continues to serve on the board as a board member. Sunil was elected an Ashoka fellow in 1999 to 'explore the democratic potential of the Internet' and was granted a Sarai FLOSS fellowship in 2003. Between June 2004 and June 2007, he managed the International Open Source Network, a project of the UNDP's Asia-Pacific Development Information Programme serving 42 countries in the Asia-Pacific region. Between September 2007 and June 2008, he also managed ENRAP, an electronic network of International Fund for Agricultural Development projects in the Asia-Pacific facilitated and co-funded by International Development Research Centre, Canada.

Sunil is the co-author for the following publications:

Read Sunil's detailed resume here.

Email: sunil@cis-india.org.

Phone: +91 96111 00817

Nirmita Narasimhan

Nirmita Narasimhan

Nirmita is a Policy Director with the Centre for Internet and Society, working in the areas of policy research and advocacy related to technology access for persons with disabilities. She was involved in drafting the Indian National Universal Electronic Accessibility Policy and also worked closely with different departments of the Government of India to bring accessibility into their policies and programmes. Nirmita has authored several reports on accessibility which are being used by policymakers worldwide. She has also presented papers on ICT and Accessibility at international fora like the IGF and is the Director, Global Reports, for G3ict. She has also participated in the World Blind Union Treaty negotiations at WIPO. Nirmita has won several awards for her work, including the National Award for Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities, which she received from the President of India in December 2010. Her educational background includes degrees in Law, German and Music.

List of volumed edited by Nirmita:

Read Nirmita's detailed resume.

Email: nirmita@cis-india.org.

Phone: +91 98458 68078.

Pranesh Prakash

Pranesh Prakash

Pranesh is a Policy Director at CIS and works on policy research and advocacy around intersections of technology and law focusing on access to knowledge (primarily copyright reforms), promoting 'openness' (including open government data, open standards, open access, and free/libre/open source software), freedom of expression, privacy, and internet governance.

Pranesh is the co-author for the following publications:

Read Pranesh's detailed resume.
Email: pranesh@cis-india.org.
Phone: +91 99161 58217

Elonnai Hickok

Elonnai Hickok

Elonnai is a Director - Internet Governance at the Centre for Internet and Society, Bangalore. Elonnai has graduated from the University of Toronto where she studied international development and political science. Elonnai leads the privacy, surveillance, and big data work at the Centre and has also written extensively on issues pertaining to intermediary liability, digital rights, identity, cyber security and DNA profiling. Elonnai has also worked as a consultant with the Open Society Foundations and with the Ranking Digital Rights project.

Her publications include:

Saikat Datta

Saikat Datta

Saikat Datta is a Policy Director with the Centre for Internet & Society, India.

He is an award winning journalist for over 20 years as an editor and an investigative reporter with several news organisations. He has been a defence correspondent with The Indian Express, an assistant editor with the Outlook magazine, Resident Editor with DNA, member of the Editorial Board with Zee News and Editor (National Security) with Hindustan Times.

Saikat's investigative reporting has been awarded the International Press Institute award (2007), the Jagan Phadnis Memorial award (2008) and the National RTI award for investigative journalism (2010).

He is also the author of India's Special Forces (2013), a seminal book on the history and the future of India's special operations capabilities.He writes regularly in various publications and his research papers have been published by the Centre for Land Warfare Studies (CLAWS), Centre for Air Power Studies (CAPS) and the National Security Guards (NSG), among others. He regularly conducts training sessions on hostage rescue operations for Mumbai Police's crack anti-terrorism outfit, Force One. His core areas of research are around counter-terrorism, intelligence, cybersecurity and the use of special forces in strategic roles.

He has also worked for two years in the corporate sector as Vice President and Head of De-risking Strategies for Reliance Industries, working on cybersecurity and counter terrorism projects.

He is also a Consulting Editor with www.Scroll.in and a consultant on cybersecurity with IIM, Bangalore. He has also been a Lead Researcher & Senior Fellow with the Internet Democracy Project and a Visiting Fellow with the Observer Research Foundation's National Security programme.

E-mail: saikat@cis-india.org.

Twitter: @saikatd.

Sumandro Chattapadhyay

Sumandro Chattapadhyay

Research Director at CIS, Sumandro leads and contributes to academic, creative, and policy research at the CIS. His academic interests span over topics of history and politics of informatics, new media and technology studies, and political economy. The core policy topics that Sumandro engages with include open data and open research, e-governance and digital ID, and network economy and digital labour. He is also keenly interested in computational techniques in arts, humanities, and social research, and emerging methodological questions.

Sumandro is a member of the Open Data Research Network managed by the World Wide Web Foundation and supported by IDRC, and undertook a study on the roles, practices and strategies of (open) data intermediary organisations in India (2013-2014) that led to several conference papers and reports. He has been a Programme Committee member of the Open Data Research Symposium 2015 and the same for the International Open Data Conference 2016 (IODC16). Sumandro has led contributions by CIS to the making of open data and related policies and implementation plans by central and state governments in India, and been an invited member of a committee instituted to develop an open data license to be used by Government of India. He is a member of DataMeet, a leading community of open data practitioners from India, and a founder-member of India Open Data Association.

Sumandro studied economics in Visva-Bharati, Shantiniketan, and in Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. Previously he has been a member of the founding team at the MOD Institute and worked on urban development and digital technologies; has led a data analysis and visualisation team at the Azim Premji University; and been a researcher associated with the media and information infrastructures project at the Sarai programme in the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, Delhi.

E-mail: sumandro@cis-india.org.

Resume: Download (PDF).

ORCID: 0000-0001-5724-4557.

Twitter: @ajantriks.

Administration and Finance

Ajoy Kumar

Ajoy Kumar

Ajoy is an Administrator at CIS. He manages all the events organised by CIS including hotel and travel bookings, does the liasoning with government offices and Members of Parliament, etc. Ajoy also works as a part-time lawyer doing property documentation.

Read Ajoy's detailed resume.

Email: ajoy@cis-india.org.

K.N. Medini

K.N. Medini

Medini is a Senior Accounts Officer at the Centre for Internet and Society. Medini began her work as an accountant in 1992. After completing her Bachelors in Commerce from Andhra Pradesh S V University, she procured a Diploma in Accounts and began working with a Chartered Accountant to learn the ropes of her profession. For the past fifteen years she has worked with Chartered Accountants, companies and NGOs in handling company and organisation’s accounts. In 2003, she joined the Accounts team of Partners in Child Development, an EveryChild partner. In 2004, she joined EveryChild India as the Head Office Accountant. Since then she has been managing the organisation’s accounts and streamlining into handling the organisation’s partners project accounts. Having been with EveryChild India since its inception, Medini has seen the organisation grow from infancy into adulthood. A mother of two, Medini loves to play with her children and make handicraft items in her free time.

Email: medini@cis-india.org

Velankanni Royson

Velankanni Royson

Royson is the Office Assistant in the Bangalore office. He assists the administration department in organising events, takes videos of the events, uploads them to the CIS website, Blip TV, YouTube, etc.

Email: royson@cis-india.org.

Openness and Access to Knowledge

Nehaa Chaudhari

Nehaa Chaudhari

Nehaa is a lawyer; a graduate of the National Academy of Legal Studies and Research (“NALSAR”) University of Law at Hyderabad, India. She has an abiding interest in intellectual property law, particularly in limitations and exceptions to copyright and related rights.Currently, at the Centre for Internet and Society (“CIS”), New Delhi, she is a Programme Officer, engaging primarily in research on intellectual property law and policy and openness at the domestic and international levels.

Read Nehaa's resume.

Read Nehaa's blog entries.

Email: nehaa@cis-india.org

Twitter: @nehaachaudhari.

Anubha Sinha

Anubha Sinha

Anubha is a Programme Officer at CIS. She works primarily on the Pervasive Technologies Project, and on other issues involving intellectual property law and openness. She regularly contributes to the SpicyIP blog and was trained as a lawyer at Dr. RML National Law University, Lucknow.

Email: anubha@cis-india.org

Twitter: @anubhasinha_.

LinkedIn: linkedin.com/pub/anubha-sinha/1b/a9b/b73.

Rohini Lakshané

Rohini Lakshane

Rohini is Program Officer, Pervasive Technologies Project. She is an instrumentation engineer by training and has worked as a technology journalist in the past. She juggles several other hats including those of a Wikipedian and a digital security trainer.

Email: rohini@cis-india.org.

Rohini lives in Bangalore and tweets @aldebaran14.

Internet Governance

Vidushi Marda

Vidushi Marda

Vidushi is a Programme Officer at CIS, working primarily in the areas of internet governance, freedom of expression, privacy and openness. She is particularly interested in network neutrality and also in understanding how algorithms impact the information we consume. She graduated in 2015 from Christ University with a degree in arts and law.

Email: vidushi@cis-india.org.

Twitter: @VidushiMarda.

Vanya Rakesh

Vanya Rakesh

Vanya graduated in Law from ILNU, Ahmedabad. She is working as a Programme Officer on Big Data implications in the Global South and Privacy with the Information Policy team. She has been trained at some of the top legal firms in India and has an inclination towards Internet Law. She is based out of Bangalore.

Email: vanya@cis-india.org.

Twitter: @vanyarakesh.

Amber Sinha

Amber S

Amber works on issues surrounding privacy, big data, and cyber security. He is interested in the impact of emerging technologies like artificial intelligence and learning algorithms on existing legal frameworks, and how they need to evolve in response. Amber studied humanities and law at National Law School of India University, Bangalore.

E-mail: amber@cis-india.org.

Twitter: @ambersinha07.

Japreet Grewal


Japreet works on issues surrounding technology and regulation with emphasis on issues affecting freedom of expression and intermediary liability at the domestic and international levels under the Internet Governance and Freedom of Expression Project at CIS. She has previously worked at Amarchand Mangaldas & Suresh A Shroff, New Delhi and graduated in 2013 from Gujarat National Law University with a degree in law.

Email: japreet@cis-india.org.

Twitter: @JapreetGrewal.

Udbhav Tiwari

Udbhav Tiwari
Udbhav is a Policy Officer who works on matters relating to cyber security, digital payments, privacy and artificial intelligence. He is interested in the role played by international standardisation (via participation at the ISO and IEEE) in ensuring consistent global best practices by diverse stakeholders, especially in the context of developing countries. He also dabbles in hobbyist programming, hardware assembly and DIY technology in his free time. He is about to graduate from the West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences (WBNUJS) in Kolkata, India where he studied for an arts and law B.A LLB (Hons.) degree.

Researchers at Work

P.P. Sneha


Sneha is Programme Officer with the Researchers at Work (RAW) programme at CIS. Her training is in Humanities, and she has previously worked in the field of higher education. At CIS she is presently engaged with a project on mapping the emergent field of Digital Humanities in India, and is also interested in questions on the nature of textuality, reading and writing practices in the digital sphere.

Read Sneha's resume.

Email: sneha@cis-india.org.

Zeenab Aneez


Zeenab is a Research Associate with the Researchers at Work (RAW) programme at CIS. Her interests include digital publishing practises, new media journalism, media ecologies, digital labour, and social media alternatives. She was previously a reporter at The Hindu, Hyderabad, and has worked as an independent journalist.

E-mail: zeenab@cis-india.org.

Twitter: @zeenabaneez.

Himadri Chatterjee

E-mail: himadri@cis-india.org.

Document Actions